Personal Style

Aurora Sansone

A fashion editor at Vogue Nippon, Aurora Sansone is one of my favorite Italian stylists. She has a knack for blending color, texture and print, and as an admirer of menswear styling, Sansone adds the right feminine touches to her borrowed from the boys pieces, resulting in a sophisticated but uncomplicated look. I find her manner of dressing particularly inspiring, however, because of her instinct for wearing vintage pieces in a modern way. In expertly mixing contemporary fashion with vintage clothing and accessories, Sansone’s style is wonderfully charming and unassuming.

Milan Fashion Week Fall 2015 Ready-to-Wear; image Tommy Ton

Milan Fashion Week Fall 2015 Ready-to-Wear; image Tommy Ton

image Phil Oh

image Phil Oh

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Aurora_Sansone_by_STYLEDUMONDE_Street_Style_Fash

Here, in this short video she shares her ideas about style with New York Magazine.

 

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Weekend Style Inspiration

Why don’t you…wear monochrome

While enjoying this week’s batch of street style photographs, I noticed a lot of monochromatic dressing for the beginning of the Fall 2015 Ready-t0-Wear shows in New York. Instead of appearing dated, the single color trend looks modern with the combination of textured fabrics and prints. I like the fluid head to toe sophistication of this kind of dressing, either in cream/winter white, black, navy or grey. Accessories in a matching or complimentary shade complete the look.

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

Gala Gonzalez; Harper's Bazaar

Gala Gonzalez; via Harper’s Bazaar

Veronika Heilbrunner; image Tommy Ton

Veronika Heilbrunner; image Tommy Ton

Shiona Turini via Harper's Bazaar

Shiona Turini via Harper’s Bazaar

Amanda Weiner; via Harper's Bazaar

Amanda Weiner; via Harper’s Bazaar

image The Sartorialist

image The Sartorialist

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

Caroline de Maigret

Caroline de Maigret; via Harper’s Bazaar

Nicole Warne; via Harper's Bazaar

Nicole Warne; via Harper’s Bazaar

Luping Wang; image Tommy Ton

Luping Wang; image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Weekend Style Inspiration

It’s All About the Silhouette

Oversized has gained traction recently as a popular trend for both Fall and Spring. There is something fresh and old school glamorous about the looser silhouette. It’s a look that plays with the androgynous appeal of the drape of fabric and the contrast of textures.

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

Alana Zimmer; image Harper's Bazaar

Alana Zimmer; via Harper’s Bazaar

Annina Mislin

Annina Mislin

northerncalstyltonedeft

Chrissy Rutherford; image Harper's Bazaar

Chrissy Rutherford; via Harper’s Bazaar

Xiao Wen Ju; image Tommy Ton

Xiao Wen Ju; image Tommy Ton

image The Sartorialist

image The Sartorialist

Ada Kokosar; via fabsugar

Ada Kokosar; via fabsugar

image The Sartorialist

image The Sartorialist

Vika Gazinskaya

Vika Gazinskaya via Athens-Streetstyle

 

 

 

 

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Essays and Musings

An Afternoon in the Eternal City

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On an afternoon in the fall last year, while staying in an apartment for five days in Rome’s centro storico, I walked with my husband to via Due Macelli, visited Catello d’Auria glove shop at number 55, and came away with two pairs of leather gloves. Both cashmere lined, one pair in dark purple, the other in bordeaux. The experience easily ranks as the most memorable retail excursion I have had. The reason for this is simple: Italians take shopping seriously. Elevating window-shopping to an art, they thoughtfully entertain all the many splendors the store windows have on offer. They observe and appreciate and weigh and calculate and reason. Love of display is abundant, and purchases are decidedly made.

Except for the deterrent of living in Los Angeles, where the temperature seldom drops below fifty degrees, I like wearing gloves. I like accessorizing with gloves. I like the elegance a pair of leather gloves lends to a coat or to a dress. I knew in Rome I wanted to buy gloves from a family run shop with a history of catering not only to royalty and stars, but a shop that serves Romans and travelers to the city with equal consideration.

The most remarkable thing you notice as you enter Catello d’Auria is that it hasn’t changed since opening its doors in 1894. Founded by a Neapolitan glove master, the shop remains unaltered, except for the addition of new stock – canvas accessory bags and socks are also for sale. The main attraction, without a doubt, however, are the antique cupboards built into the wall: one hundred twenty-five drawers painted in white, turquoise green and gold, each one housing leather gloves in various colors and sizes. From the ceiling hang five original crystal chandeliers. There is only one large selling counter where you will find the elderly owner, who still runs the shop with her son.

Wall of original 19th century drawers

Wall of original 19th century drawers

There is this about approaching the counter: a prospective customer gets the distinct feeling of being sized up. On that afternoon, after confirming that I was indeed there looking for gloves, the owner asked me my hand size. Because during the years spent living in cold climates, I had accumulated several pairs of gloves, all in size seven and a half, I confidently offered up this number. She parried with size seven. Then she took a small satin pillow from behind the counter, presented it to me, and demonstrated how she wanted me to lean forward from the waist and place my elbow squarely on it. Feeling a bit like I was preparing to arm wrestle with an opponent, I did as she asked. It seemed to me the owner’s movements as she served me were ceremonial; she pulled a pair of gloves from one of the antique drawers and tugged it on over my hand – an action she must have repeated many times over the years. The effect was immediate: the size seven glove fit snuggly with no creases. And so, it turns out for all of my adult life, I had been wearing gloves a half size too large.

Of all the memories of those five days in Rome, the most exceptional to me is the satisfaction of the owner in having completed the perfect sale. She expertly helped her customer to find the correct size and colors. This strikes me as the height of a luxurious shopping experience, one that is personalized to the customer’s particular needs. Times have changed. Even in an ancient city like Rome there are many large contemporary chain stores. Yet, the small historic shops still exist, as if in a dream.

Years ago, I was once summed up as a fantasist, an estimate I wasn’t sure I agreed with. Now, after visiting Catello d’Auria and returning to Los Angeles with two pairs of size seven leather gloves, I am not just a fantasist, I am an optimist.

One of the 19th century cabinets

A 19th century cabinet behind the counter

Vintage wool Giorgio of Beverly Hills dress with purple Catello d'Auria gloves

Vintage Giorgio Beverly Hills wool dress with purple Catello d’Auria gloves

Stella McCartney cashmere coat with bordeaux Catello d'Auria gloves

Stella McCartney cashmere coat with bordeaux Catello d’Auria gloves

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Weekend Style Inspiration

Denim

Although denim fabric has recently been traced back to the 1650s in Northern Italy, rather than to the French town of Nimes, as previously believed, it didn’t become a popular fabric until the Gold Rush in the 1870s. This Spring, denim is a strong trend in either a baby blue or traditional indigo wash. And with a raw hem, the American classic looks completely modern.

Debbie Harry

Debbie Harry

Charlie's Angels

Charlie’s Angels

Charlotte Rampling

Charlotte Rampling

Kirstie Alley, 1981; image Brad Elterman

Kirstie Alley, 1981; image Brad Elterman

Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, 1996; image Lawrence Schwartzwald

Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, 1996; image Lawrence Schwartzwald

via Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

Heilburg; via Tommy Ton

Veronika Heilbrunner; image Tommy Ton

via Iconic.o

via iconic.o

via The Sartorialist

image The Sartorialist

Joanna Hillman; Harper's Bazaar

Joanna Hillman; image Harper’s Bazaar

Viviana Volpicella; image Tommy Ton

Viviana Volpicella; image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

image Tommy Ton

Liu Wen; image Harper's Bazaar

Liu Wen; image Harper’s Bazaar

Christine Centenera; image Harper's Bazaar

Christine Centenera; image Harper’s Bazaar

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